So after my last battery began dying on me I decided to pull the trigger and get an (expensive) Optima battery.

According to the maker website the SKU compatible with my car (2013 Nissan Versa) is the D51R. Went to my local Autozone and that’s what I asked for.

Everything seems premium about this battery’s construction. My only gripe is the battery is smaller than a regular battery so either you have to order the spacer or get creative to secure it in place. This is what I’m talking about:

For now I just got a bit creative (forgot to take a picture of it), not satisfied but will have to do until either I get the spacer or make my own definitive solution. I used a curtain bracket, the factory screw fits on the bracket hole, I just had to bend it a bit to secure the battery in place.

Removing the old battery was easy. Placing the new one and hooking it up was also easy. Securing it with the materials I had on hand, not so much.

With the battery in place I went for a test drive. I don’t know if its because of the smaller battery but the car feels lighter. The AC feels colder, the stereo sounds more powerful and cleaner, the cellphone charger keeps up better with my cellphone (I use it for dvr and obdii functions), the lights are brighter and the horn (aftermarket Wolo) is louder and doesn’t sound distorted anymore.

Update 08/12/17

I came up with something a bit better, though still not satisfied.

Wood is pretty good absorbing vibration.

On another note, battery gets pretty hot on this 100+ weather (38+ C). We’ll see if it’s true it can be used on the Baja.


 

The old LTH battery was a good battery, I think it only lasted two years because of the intense driving conditions experienced this very spring/summer. I use slightly more crap than the typical driver: OBDII dongle, cellphone charger and non stock head unit (haven’t installed the amplifier yet) and bi xenon head lamps. Temperatures surpassing 100 F even at night (and off course I also have to crank up the AC). In addition to that roads in the town of Apodaca are not that friendly to say the least and local government makes things more difficult every day. Things can get a bit bumpy:

 

Basically, because it “just works”. If you’re an individual or small business operation using Windows 7 just stick to it until the very end.

As to how do I know it is rock solid, it is because I’m lucky enough to work for a company that has VL agreement that includes it. Members of the corporate IT dept didn’t know about it till I mentioned it. Then they checked with the MS partner then sure enough it’s covered. It’ll be used on new hardware (Kaby Lake based) from now on.

I’ve been testing it since last year, very stable, every single piece of company software I’ve thrown at it works.  You can make it as “barebones” (like in the factory floor) or as feature rich as you want (eg an Office CAD workstation).

You can also install utilities like O&O Shutup 10 and Spy Anti-Beacon if you want to feel a little bit more secure about telemetry.

This is a comment I saw at the Spiceworks forums that further expands on the topic:

“To address why obtaining Windows 10 Long Term Servicing Branch isn’t easy, it is because Microsoft has decided that they were not making enough money with the old Windows 7 design. And LTSB is effectively what Windows 7 used to be. Like windows 7, it does not get new features every couple months, but is just a rock solid dependable operating system without unnecessary bells and whistles.

LTSB is an excellent choice if you are a health care device manufacturer and you need a modern Windows platform that is licensed to operate a patient ultrasound scanner.

The new Windows 10 consumer/education/small-biz model is to probe and analyze customers and use that for marketing purposes, to promote Microsoft’s products, and to make buying and installing software in Windows 10 easier for the “iphone App” generation. Cortana vacuums up everything you say to it to build a personality and interest profile of you, and Edge records every search, and Windows 10 itself monitors keystrokes to track everything you do. All for the marketers to more accurately sell to you.

It is a complete joke for Windows 10 “Education edition” to include Candy Crush and XBox on the start menu. It’s almost as if Microsoft sees schools not as a place to learn, but as a place to market their App Store sales to kids.

And the 18 month feature release cycle allows Microsoft to completely rewrite how the OS works to throw all your careful restrictive initial planning to disable XBox and Candy Crush out the window. 1511 nags at you when you choose Google Chrome as your default browser over Edge, where earlier Windows 10 didn’t do that, all to help Microsoft try to regain market dominance.

Windows 10 LTSB disables all that. It only does the same few specific things it did when it was shipped, and it only gets security updates. It doesn’t generate as much marketing and data mining revenue on the backside for Microsoft, and because of that, they want to make obtaining it as difficult and restricted as possible, because LTSB robs them of that.

So, it is sold only to deep-pocketed customers who are already spending thousands to tens of thousands up front on volume licensing and the double-licensing for volume licenses that Microsoft requires. (The system must come with an OEM/retail Windows license/key that is not used, and volume licensing is purchased separate on top of that cost.)”

Let’s see, it must have been in 2002. I began doing repairs around late 97, in 01 I replaced the AT case and PSU for an ATX case/PSU (as the Mobo allowed either kind). Then in 2002 I ordered a Mobo with integrated CPU (ECS K7SEM), that’s when I pretty much made it my own. I gave it to my sis when she got married, then years after I visited them and saw it there just collecting dust and asked for it back. It is my Win98 rig, besides gaming I also use it for scanning docs and pics with my trusty Canon N640pEx.

The first PC I assembled (mid 03) buying everything had a huge (like 5 bays I think) white ATX case, it had a Biostar M7VKQ mobo with an a Athlon XP 2100 CPU, 256MB PC133 ram, a KWorld capture card (which I still have in storage) a Sound Blaster Live 5.1 Mp3 (which I’m using on the K7SEM) and a Sis based 32MB PCI video card. I I was totally free, no longer I had to share the “house PC”. The HDD was a 40gb one, which at the time it was plentiful for my gaming, development and video capture / editing / DVD riping. Sadly, less than a year after, my father died and I had to sell it to help with the ensuing financial difficulties (I was an entry level IT tech at the time).

Some background first: It was with DOS that I began using computers, a Tek 8088 was my first PC, then we moved onto a Tandy 1000 TL2 then onto an HP Vectra VL2 486/66. On the Vectra is where I began using Windows.

With this project I pretend to recreate some of those experiences. I had some old components laying around, others, like the case and the 5.25″-3.5″ bracket adapter I bought new and this is what I came up with.

“The way I see it, if you’re gonna build a time machine into a PC, why not do it with some style?”

These are the specs:

Mobo: WS440BX Gateway Tabor 3
CPU: Pentium II Klamath 233 @ 133 Mhz
Ram: 64MB PC133
HDD: WD AC14300 4.3 GB
CD: GCR8481B
Video: Nvidia TNT 16MB AGP 2x
LAN: 3Com 3C905-TX
Sound: Soundblaster Pro 2 CT1600

Everything was coming along nicely, until, I realized the PSU placement was far from ideal:

Ouch. Never had this problem in my career. A quick search on the internets showed the problem is more common than I thought, even with modern hardware. I was able to find a local vendor who was selling an ATX 24 pin to ATX 20 pin converter, it even had the white cable for some reason (not that I’m complaining). Just a little help and I was back in business:

I was going to use an IDE to CF adapter, but then remembered part of the experience back in the day was that HDD noise, so I went for the oldest specimen I had.

The FDISK operations went fine, I removed the existing partition then created 2 partitions.

It was when I tried to format drive C: that it made that “clank clank” noise of death and format gave an error. Fearing the worst, still, I rebooted and this time tried to format drive D: which worked fine. I tried again to format drive C: and this time it went through. So I went ahead and proceeded with DOS installation, so far so good.

With DOS 6.22 up and running I went ahead and installed Win 3.11

Riva TNT Drivers installed. 1024×768 and 256 colors to keep that retro feel.

Sound card drivers, no problemo

The Sound Blaster Pro 2 CT1600 is an awesome card, (not pictured) I was playing some Gabriel Knight, simply outstanding.

Some of the games from my 8088 games also work fine

I’m pending to get the network card working.

There are a number of things that happened this year to reflect on.   One of them being my knee injury, my gf leaving me after knowing I ‘d require surgery (even had marriage plans for October). Instead of bringing me down, I  think that just made me stronger. With friends, family  and my leaders support, I explored my  options went with therapy and here I am, walking again, Standing in line again,, doing stuff I was able to do before (like installing that ceiling fan). I know I can do more, so here’s for a more productive year.

Atari 8-bit power supplies

I rather be redundant and list one more time the different kinds of Atari 8 bit computer power supplies:

C061982 ‘The White Brick’ (Upper left) 1.5A very reliable, rare
C061982 ‘The Black Brick’ (Lower Left) 1.5A very reliable, rare
C061982 ‘The Ingot’ (Center Top) 1.5A (POOP)
C061982 ‘The Box’ (Top Right) 1.5A very reliable
C70042-011 ‘The Mini’ (the one on top of the Black Brick) 1A shipped with most XEGS systems (POOP)
C70042-01 ‘The Logo’ (Bottom Right) 1A very reliable

When the poopie ones fail, they’ll take ICs with them. AVOID them at all costs. The only usable part on those would be the 7 pin connector.

A modern regulated 5V 1A+ power supply can be converted for use on an Atari computer but I’ll discuss that on another post.

This past July 22nd, 2016 SEGA celebrated the 25 years of Sonic the Hedgehog with an official party at the House of Blues during the San Diego Comic-con. Although I consider myself a big SEGA and Sonic fan, sadly I was unable to attend the party due to financial and scheduling reasons (mostly financial lol). For those who were able to attend, they were treated to special guests, exclusive 25th Anniversary merchandise and musical performances by Crush 40 and Hyper Potions.

Included in the swag bag are the following:

– Sonic the Hedgehog 25th Anniversary bag
– Sonic the Hedgehog 25th Anniversary coin
– Sonic the Hedgehog 25th Anniversary USB thumb stick
– Sonic: Mega Drive #1 variant comic
– Sonic the Hedgehog 25th Anniversary New Era Hat
– Sonic Plushie
– Totinos hat

Hope you guys enjoyed the share! Would love to know if any of you were able to attend the Sonic the Hedgehog 25th Anniversary party at SDCC. Feel free to share your love for SEGA, Sonic and any special moments from the event. As always, game on brothers and sisters!

On my Slim PS2 everything works but PS1 games loaded via PSXLauncher (my imports for example). As I don’t have a PS1 at the moment, using component with my PS2 will be a no go for me. The issue with PSXLauncher and using a component cable is that the colors are wrong and the image is too bright, it looks horrible.
The other thing is, unlike with the Xbox, I didn’t notice much improvement over composite, so I’ll just keep using composite.